RICHMOND 24 LONDON SCOTTISH 19
Richmond held off a late London Scottish rally to secure a home win in the first game of the season. Despite being outscored by three tries to two, the boot of Rob Kirby ensured that the home side kept their ‘visitors’ at arm’s length throughout.
A tight scoreline was always going to be the outcome between the RAG rivals, and so it proved. In truth, though, Richmond only trailed for a few minutes in the entire game, and will be delighted with the level of control they held for much of the game, particularly considering the two yellow cards they received as Sam Edgerley and Will Warden both took ten minute breaks. A huge effort up front, combined with a defensive output that few sides in the Championship will want to go up against, saw the side home.
A moment of close-range magic from Luc Jones was the decisive score in the end, and it was timed perfectly after Scottish had just bounced back from Ronnie McLean’s powerful finish with a score of their own to stay in touch. Kirby’s constant penalties kept on hurting the Scots, and despite going over in the 78th minute to make it a nervy finish, they couldn’t overturn the deficit.
ONE FOR THE SCRUM
While Rob Kirby’s boot was pivotal for Richmond, and both tries came from the back division, plaudits will inevitably go to the boys up front. From the first minute, when Richmond turned over a London Scottish scrum, the pack never let up, and the set-piece dominance that has been instilled earned territory and penalties time and time again.
It’s no surprise that man of the match went to a front row player, with Will Goodrick-Clarke. In truth, it could have gone to any of the six who took the field, but Goodrick-Clarke’s 70 minute effort at the coalface was a truly incredible effort.
| Will Goodrick-Clarke (second from R) and the rest of the front row crew!
A CAPTAIN’S EFFORT
It’s one win from one for new captain Cam Mitchell, and his leadership was instrumental throughout the game, not least in managing his side when they were twice a player down. “It’s fantastic, and the lads are over the moon,” he said after the game. “We’ve worked hard, we wanted to right the wrongs of last year, and obviously we wanted to start this campaign with a win. Were happy but we’ve still got a long way to go – I don’t think we played our best there, so we look forward to moving on to next week up in Yorkshire.”
Tries: McLean-Dents, Jones
Pens: Kirby (4)
Rob Kirby; Jono Woodward, Cam Mitchell (c), Ronnie McLean, Sam Edgerley; Rory Damant, Luc Jones; Will Goodrick-Clarke, Ross Grimstone, Craig Trenier, Charlie Lenygon, Will Warden, Jake Parker, Jesse Liston, Ed Milne
Subs: Rupert Freestone, Timmy Walford, Dave Spelman, Harison Edwards, Toby Saysell, Lewis Dennett, Jordan Simpson-Hefft